Laptop Up Close

Information and data security are always major areas of concern. One of the biggest advantages of hiring professional IT services is the added security and continued protection against malicious activity.

Internal vs External Threats

It’s easy for business leaders to assume that all of the worst threats facing their network come from the outside. External threats certainly have earned a lot of notoriety. Hackers may use brute force tactics and DNS attacks to cause problems for companies across the globe. Ransomware and other forms of malware, such as viruses, are some of the most well-known problems that businesses face. However, internal threats can be devastating as well. Unfortunately, they’re not always defended against.

Some malicious attacks occur due to the actions of internal staff, people who already have privileged access. This makes external defenses useless against them. Of course, bad actors and malicious activity aren’t the only problems. Sometimes malware is downloaded by mistakes, or it may be carried in on an employee’s thumb drive.

Common Internal Threats

Your team is your greatest strength, but we’re all human, prone to making mistakes. Passwords that are easy to guess do little to deter hackers. Passwords that aren’t changed regularly can also present an issue. Requiring more complex passwords or randomly generating passwords may provide some added degree of security.  People have to be educated about risk factors, and their passwords and other sensitive details have to be kept secret.

Downloading malicious content is often done by mistake. This is why privileges need to be carefully guarded and only trusted websites should be used. Online games and even videos could have a rootkit hidden within them, despite giving no obvious indication that anything is wrong. Facebook, browser-based games, and other common sites may spread malware to a home computer or a workstation. Regular updates and safety protocols are good ways to avoid problems before they happen.

Employee Using Computer

Cyberattacks can occur from within. Employees who already have access don’t need to worry about your external defenses. They’re on the inside. System administrators, IT staff, and other people with computer skills are able to plant malware, or create back doors that can later be used to steal sensitive information. The best defense is to change passwords immediately after an employee has left the company to prevent remote access.

An information leak can be both embarrassing and damaging. Edward Snowden is perhaps the most high-profile example of an internal leak. Unfortunately, this is difficult to prevent. IT staff and other personnel often have no choice but to use thumb drives for their daily tasks. They simply can’t do their work without them. By training your employees, limiting access, and restricting the kinds of devices that can be used, you can mitigate many risk factors. However, it’s essential that you attempt to balance security with practicality. After all, your team still has important work to do.

Services and Strategy

Even the best IT services in Atlanta can be improved with an effective strategy and employee training. Defending your business and sensitive information requires careful monitoring and analysis of your network traffic. Call Bridge Technology Operations at (877) 686-1122 and speak with experienced IT professionals to learn about solutions and strategies for improved information security.